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Thread: Could humans live independent from nature?

  1. #1 Could humans live independent from nature? 
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    Yes, I know that humans technically are nature. But could they survive on what they create and make in test tubes and labs in the future?

    Food- cloning animals for food, genetically modified plants, artificial agriculture
    creating protein and vitamins in test tubes

    Building- artificial substances like fiberglass (fiberglass can still be considered unnatural if it was "created" by humans)

    The only thing that they would have is water, sun/moon and of course, energy.

    This is for a novel I am writing. It takes place many many many many many years in the future. Basically what I'm asking is: At the peak of our advancement, would humans be able to create everything they need?

    Serious answers please. If you're not going to answer my specific questions, don't answer. This is just a general question.


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  3. #2  
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    Hi Limmering,

    Well, I would say that Nature is omnipresent. Humans are fairly obvious products of Nature, however all of the matter - be it living or inanimate - as well as the physical forces present in the Universe, are also products of natural processes, of Nature e.g. products of the Big Bang. However, I don't think that this is the question that you were intending to ask.

    It probably is possible for humans to be sustained on products which they have created for themselves, e.g. in a Laboratory. We, of course, do this to some extent everyday. Having said this, we would still require the raw materials necessary for the creation of such products. Typically, these would come from Nature. So, it becomes a bit arbitrary at which point you define something as natural or man-made.

    Good luck with the novel.

    Tri


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  4. #3  
    Forum Junior JennLonhon's Avatar
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    If you're asking if humans could create everything they need from NOTHING, than, no, i don't think so. Because no matter how far our technology goes in the future, you still need "ingredients" to make something.
    However, if we are talking about small amounts of supplies on the planet that need to be enlarged for human using, than, i guess yeah. I'm taking in consideration that far in the future we will be able to create things with a lot less energy than now, because if not, than i don't think the process would be successful due to the fact you need need to spend more energy than you'll eventually gain.
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  5. #4  
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    What do you mean by nature exactly?

    I always thought of it as things unaffected by humans. If you use that way of thinking then we already do live separate from it.

    I agree with the others, totally possible and fairly probable.
    just wondering
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  6. #5  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
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    Yes its possible and even before the peak of (potential) human advancement. At some point we get to the stage of self assembling automated factories manufacturing machines that rearrange matter on a molecular level. And it would be possible before this stage though at increasing levels of effort to do so.

    From our present perspective though, deciding to go out of one's way to avoid benefiting from available ecological mechanisms appears to be a bit masochist. As a low tech example, in a greenhouse, an agronomist could certainly decide to spend hours manually pollinating flowers with a cotton swab if he really wants to, but its much easier to take advantage of an available ecological mechanism and have bumblebees in the greenhouse to do it instead.

    In an ecosystem avoidance policy scenario, there might not be bacteriological ecosystems where humans live and humans could try to be as aseptic as possible (and potentially dislike/avoid/fear microorganisms more than we presently do), potentially combating microorganisms with nanobots.

    cheers
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  7. #6  
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    Haha thanks for the insight! I tried Yahoo Answers and you can imagine how that went...

    I know that we need ingredients that can only come from nature but after we develop methods to create proteins and such, we could produce everything on our own right? Robots would basically do everything from a molecular level and on a macroscopic level too.

    I am writing a novel and it basically takes place where humans are separated from "nature".

    Any other ideas? Thanks!
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  8. #7  
    Forum Junior JennLonhon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zendra
    What do you mean by nature exactly?

    I always thought of it as things unaffected by humans. If you use that way of thinking then we already do live separate from it.

    I agree with the others, totally possible and fairly probable.
    How can you see nature as something unaffected by humans? o.O Humans are nature, they belong to it. Everything we eat, drink, walk on, its all nature....But I guess he was referring to our dependence on water, food and fuel resources in nature.
    "Be the change you want to see in the world"
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  9. #8  
    Administrator KALSTER's Avatar
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    I am writing a novel and it basically takes place where humans are separated from "nature".
    I guess I would define it as when we are separated from other forms of life. This makes for a few interesting questions, like if our gut bacteria form part of us, or if we want to even get rid of them.
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  10. #9  
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    You can't get rid of your gut bacteria you would die.
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  11. #10  
    Moderator Moderator TheBiologista's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by barbara
    You can't get rid of your gut bacteria you would die.
    Citation needed. It's not healthy, sure, but would it kill you? I sort of doubt it. Would make taking antibiotics a much more hazardous practice than it is (though it's not risk free as it is).
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